CDC Calls for Strict Edibles Labeling, Public Education

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After evaluating a fatal accident that took place last year in Denver, the Center for Disease Control has issued a statement calling on future recreational states to follow Colorado’s lead on labeling, packaging and dosage limitation restrictions.

“Other states permitting recreational marijuana use could potentially reduce adverse health effects by considering similar THC limits in marijuana edible products, and by enforcing clear labeling standards that require information on multidose products,” the statement reads.

The position, given that it’s coming from the federal government, will likely have great sway over future rulemaking in places such as Oregon, Alaska and any other states that legalize recreational cannabis in the years to come.

The statement was in response to an incident last year in which an exchange student ate more than six times the recommended dose of an edible cookie and subsequently jumped off a hotel balcony to his death.

Colorado has worked to strengthen its labeling and dosing regulations since then.

The statement also suggested that there may be a greater need for “improved public health messaging” to avoid potential problems from overconsumption of edibles, which generally take longer to kick in than smoking cannabis flower. The CDC concluded that was what happened in the student’s death; that he tried a single serving, and then ate the rest of the cookie after not feeling any effects.

Partly in reaction to that story and others, the Marijuana Policy Project launched a public education campaign last year featuring the slogan “Start low, go slow” with regard to edibles.